It was through my dear class friend Avinash Sankholkar that I came to know of Bishop Ferdinand Joseph Foseca’s death on 2nd October 2015. It brought back memories of one of the finest human-beings who has been a source of inspiration to me. He was the Principal of Antonio D’Souza High School. I was a student of this wonderful school and was amongst the lucky few to have him as our English teacher in the 11th standard.
He was a brilliant teacher and had excellent communication skills. He was a strict disciplinarian and was loved and respected by all the students. He gave me a certificate of recognition after I completed my Secondary School Certificate which I treasure till date. I still remember him explaining Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde making it so simple and so easy to understand. His tall graceful personality, his charm, his clear audible voice always made me eager and excited to attend his classes. It was such a pleasure attending his English class.
Like it happened in that amazing film “Tuesdays with Morie” I got busy in fact so busy with my life that I never made an attempt to meet him. I feel terrible about it now as it was during this year that I was determined to meet him during my vacation but this meeting will not take place now as he has left for his heavenly abode.
We come across some beautiful people who make a great difference in our lives and somehow we completely neglect them and then regret later when they are no more. Bishop Fonseca you will always remain in my heart as one of the rare priceless gems that illuminated my life with wisdom and knowledge. Indeed! You have served humanity and set therein benchmarks that may never be emulated again.
“Bishop Ferdie, as he was fondly called, lived in a retirement home for priests in Bandra. He had once said, “I couldn’t believe that God had chosen me, Ferdie, when He could have chosen anyone else.” He had told priests in their twilight years, “As one grows older and older, remember, you are going closer and closer to the one who will be in your heart forever.”
RIP Bishop Ferdinand Fonseca